SALEM, MA — The new coronavirus outbreak in Massachusetts and across the country is having vast impacts in Salem, including the closure of nonessential businesses, the library and schools.
As of Wednesday, the number of COVID-19 cases in Massachusetts was 1,838 and 15 people have died from the coronavirus. There were 177 cases in Essex County, according to the Massachusetts Department of Public Health. Salem reported its first three cases on March 20.
Under the stay-at-home advisory issued by Gov. Charlie Baker this week, restaurants can still offer takeout and delivery service.
Here are the latest local updates from Salem:
- City buildings – including City Hall, City Hall Annex, the Mayor Jean Levesque Community Life Center, and the Salem Public Library – are closed to the public. Departments can be reached by phone or email. Public works and public safety departments continue to function. Note that City offices are being staffed reduced hours at City Hall and City Hall Annex, from 8:00 a.m. to 4:00 p.m. Mondays-Thursdays and 8:00 a.m. to noon on Fridays. Online services are still available.
- Salem will suspend loan repayments for a period of up to six months from small businesses who are recipients of the City’s Small Business Loan Program, upon request from the borrower.
- The city is looking for volunteers to make phone calls to check in on Salem seniors.
- The library is closed but has some materials available for online lending. Due dates for all materials currently checked out have been extended through April 8th and no overdue fines will be charged during this time.
- Massachusetts schools will remain closed through at least May 3. The school system continues to provide meals to all students.
- The state temporarily lifted bans on plastic shopping bags and ordered grocery stores and pharmacies to set aside at least one hour per day for people over 60 to shop.
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